If you are like me and drink sparkling wine all through the year, then take it up a notch this holiday season and make Champagne your bubbly of choice. 2020 may not have been the season of big soirees, large office parties, elaborate holiday dinners, and grand New Year’s galas but that is no reason not to drink Champagne. If you made it this far into the year, that is all the reason you need to celebrate. Whether it is a small family Christmas dinner or a virtual toast with friends be sure to make it festive and celebratory with a bottle of Champagne.
We can’t wait to say good riddance to 2020. What a year this has been! Regardless of the year, the holiday are a special time where no ordinary bubbles will suffice, it has to be Champagne. And just a friendly reminder – Champagne is only Champagne if it comes from Champagne, France.
Piper-Heidsieck Cuvee Brut (SRP $45)
The Brut NV represents the epitome of the Piper-Heidsieck style: a classic, well-structured, and fruit-forward champagne. Piper-Heidsieck carefully selects fruit from more than 100 of Champagne’s crus to blend the Brut NV. This Champagne teases and allures us with its festive, light-drenched, pale gold shimmer and joyful display of neat, lively bubbles. Notes of almond and fresh hazelnut accompany the precise ascent of its bubbles. It is lively, subtle and light, leaving a deliciously incisive sensation of smoothness, marked by the pureness of fresh pear and apple and a delicate hint of citrus.
Leclerc Briant Brut Reserve ($74)
The Leclerc Briant Brut Reserve delivers the depth and fruitiness expected of a Champagne made from 80% black grapes, with underlying flavors of brioche and almond. The 20% Chardonnay brings an underpinning of lemony acidity, giving an impression of lightness and freshness. Unusually for most Brut Champagnes, the dosage is kept below 4 grams per liter of sugar, resulting in a flavor profile that is bone dry, vibrant, and perfect for your dinner table. It pairs wonderfully with sautéed filet of fish or slow-cooked pork. The perfect addition for a celebration, dinner party, or gathering!
Champagne Andre Jacquart “Rosé de Saignée Experience ” Brut Nature NV ($75)
André Jacquart is a “grower champagne” in the truest sense. For four generations, the parents and grandparents of André Jacquart only produced Champagne grapes. In 1958 André Jacquart introduced his own estate-bottled Champagne in Le Mesnil-sur-Oger Grand Cru. The Rosé has a brilliant deep almost cherry color that is lipstick red. The nose is full of sour cherry and wild strawberry with a hint of new oak. Creamy vinous texture, even tannic on the palate. The wine has Chambolle like flavors with beautifully persistent fine bubbles.
Charles Heidsieck Rosé Réserve NV ($87 )
Cellar Master Cyril Brun selects reserve wines of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay for 20% of this blend to blend with 80% wines of the year. The bright, pink hue and fresh strawberry flavor come from 5 to 6 percent of red Champagne wines from the Les Riceys region in the Côte des Bars known for its Pinot Noir. This wine has a delicate balance and depth of fresh fruit and warm spices after three more years of aging.
Bruno Paillard Champagne Rosé Premiere Cuvée ($70)
A hymn to the bright delicacy of Pinot Noir, the Premiere Cuvee Rosé is named on account of its composition of only the first pressing. The pink copper color with a hint of raspberry when young evolves to salmon while aging. The initial aromas of redcurrant and red fruits evolve to morello cherry, wild strawberry and violet while breathing in the glass. The palate reveals red fruit captured at their full freshness. The finish is bright and long. A very special Champagne for celebrations and gift-giving.
Louis Roederer Brut Premier ($50)
Louis Roederer has been synonymous with the world’s great Champagnes since 1776. Brut Premier is the House’s flagship multi-vintage Champagne and its most popular and best-selling wine. It’s the Champagne that sets the house style for this esteemed producer. Brut Premier characterizes the timeless Louis Roederer style with the combination of fresh, youthful fruitiness and the vinous qualities of a fully matured wine. It is a structured wine with a lively attack and a smooth palate.
Eric Rodez Blanc de Blancs Champagne NV ($60)
The Rodez family has been producing their own Champagne for generations, not simply selling their grapes to large houses. This brut Champagne is produced exclusively from several different harvests of Chardonnay. In fact, this cuvée normally sees 5 or 6 different vintages to ensure the same delicacy between years. Very flowery and delicate, and much more sensual than champagnes made with strictly high percentages of Pinot Noir.
Louis Roederer et Philippe Starck Champagne Brut Nature Rose 2012 ($85)
Champagne Louis Roederer’s Brut Nature is a Champagne conceived as an exchange, forged by a long-standing friendship. This champagne is the personification of the free-thinking that resulted from an encounter between Maison Louis Roederer and the creator Philippe Starck. This rosé is extremely special with an orange hue and salmon pink tints. Spicy aromas of Sichuan pepper combined with floral notes of violet. Toast and mocha on the nose result in an elegant and concentrated bouquet. After aeration, intense fruity notes start to emerge along with concentrated notes of wild raspberries. The palate is fruity, fresh and delicate.
Krug Grande Cuvee Champagne 168th Edition ($180)
Krug Grande Cuvée is born from the dream of one man, Joseph Krug, to craft the very best Champagne he could offer, every single year, regardless of annual variations in climate. Since 1843, the House of Krug has honored this vision with each new Édition of Krug Grande Cuvée: the most generous expression of Champagne. The Champagne has inviting aromas of flowers in bloom, ripe, dried and citrus fruits, as well as marzipan and gingerbread. Flavors of hazelnut, nougat, barley sugar, jellied and citrus fruits, almonds, brioche and honey on the palate.
Billecart-Salmon Brut Rosé Champagne ($80)
Racy, fresh, and structured, this non-vintage Rosé Champagne is a complete class act. Strawberries and cassis layer over brioche and roses in this medium-bodied, beautifully blush, quintessentially elegant wine. A blend of 45% Chardonnay, 30% Pinot Noir and 25% Pinot Meunier, the wine is brisk on the attack and finishes soft with flavors of red berries, toasted nuts and a cleansing minerality. This traditional, classic Rosé Champagne is remarkably flexible, pairing with a wide array of dishes; it’s ideal to have on hand to celebrate your special moments.